NASA Has Scheduled Its First All-Female Spacewalk

U.S. astronauts Christina Koch and Anne Mc Clain to make history during first all-female spacewalk

NASA astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch are suiting up for the female-only walk, a seven-hour extravehicular mission that will be broadcast on NASA TV. The astronauts were instructed on scientific and technical briefings, International Space Station systems, spacewalks, robotics, physiological and T-38 flight training as well as water and wilderness training, according to NASA.

NASA is about to make history on March 29 with the first all-female spacewalk outside the International Space Station. She did say that schedules and assignments could vary always.

Spacewalks are held for a number of different reasons, according to NASA, including doing work outside a spacecraft, conducting science experiments and testing new equipment. Ground support will be provided by Kristen Faccio from the Canadian Space Agency, possibly one of the best real-life instances of women supporting other women. Koch is scheduled to serve as flight engineer for the subsequent Expedition 59 and 60, the first of which is scheduled to launch on 14 March.

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In the last six decades of spaceflight, there have only been four times when missions included two female members trained for spacewalks. Mary Lawrence will be the Lead Flight Director while Jackie Kagey will take charge of the spacewalk flight controller.

"It was not orchestrated to be this way; these spacewalks were originally scheduled to take place in the fall", NASA spokesperson Stephanie Schierholz explained.

The spacewalk isn't the first tie that binds the two women.

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Both Koch and McClain were selected as members of NASA's 21st astronaut class in 2013, and finished training in 2015.

McClain is now aboard the ISS as a member of the Expedition 58 crew, which arrived back in December. But women are finally pulling ahead in the space race. Prior to joining NASA, McClain graduated from the U.S. Military Academy and was a test pilot.

The following year, cosmonaut Svetlana Savitskaya walked in space for another historic first, on July 25, 1984.

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The team is headed by Astronauts Christina Koch and Anne McClain as they make the journey to replace batteries installed past year.

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